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World News Roundup: Israel observes day of mourning for religious festival dead; Euphoric clubbers hit dance floor again and more


Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Israel observes day of mourning for religious festival dead

Israel observed a day of mourning on Sunday for 45 people crushed to death at a Jewish religious festival, with flags lowered to half-staff and questions raised about accountability for one of the country’s worst civilian disasters. In accordance with Jewish tradition, funerals were held with as little delay as possible. More than 20 of the victims of Friday’s disaster on Mount Meron were buried overnight after official identification was completed.

Euphoric clubbers hit dance floor again as Spain trials digital COVID-19 pass

Mandatory face masks could not conceal their delight as clubbers in the Spanish city of Girona moved to the thumping beats of house music put on by a live DJ. For the first time in eight months, Girona had some of its nightlife back this weekend thanks to a pilot digital pass scheme which authorities hope will allow for socialising without spreading coronavirus.

Nigeria bans travellers from India, Brazil, Turkey over COVID-19 fears

Nigeria will ban travellers coming from India, Brazil and Turkey because of concerns about the rampant spread of coronavirus in those countries, a presidential committee said on Sunday. “Non-Nigerian passport holders and non-residents who visited Brazil, India or Turkey within Fourteen (14) days preceding travel to Nigeria, shall be denied entry into Nigeria,” Boss Mustapha, chairman of the presidential steering committee on COVID-19, said in a statement.

India’s COVID-19 daily cases stay near record, another state imposes lockdown

India’s new coronavirus cases dipped marginally on Sunday but deaths from COVID-19 jumped by a record 3,689, with one more state going into lockdown as the nation’s creaky healthcare system is unable to cope with the massive caseload.

Authorities reported 392,488 new cases in the previous 24 hours, pushing total cases to 19.56 million. So far, the virus has killed 215,542 people. India reported a record 401,993 new coronavirus cases on Saturday.

G7 to look at rapid response mechanism against Russian ‘propaganda’, UK’s Raab says

The Group of Seven richest countries will look at a proposal to build a rapid response mechanism to counter Russian “propaganda” and disinformation, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab told Reuters. Speaking ahead of a G7 foreign ministers’ meeting in London, the first such in-person meeting for two years, Raab said the United Kingdom was “getting the G7 to come together with a rapid rebuttal mechanism” to counter Russian misinformation.

Pandemic and war hit tourism in Lalibela, holy Ethiopian site

As they have done for hundreds of years on the Orthodox Easter weekend, priests wrapped in traditional white robes read the Bible by candlelight on Saturday evening in the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela in northern Ethiopia. The ancient ritual has been a tourist draw in recent years.

Police, protesters clash during May Day rallies in Berlin

Around 30,000 protesters took to the streets during May Day rallies in Berlin on Saturday, police said, adding around 30 officers were injured as some of the demonstrations turned violent. Police made around 240 arrests, Berlin’s head of police Barbara Slowik was quoted as saying by local broadcaster rbb24.

Seven reported killed as Myanmar protests aim to ‘shake the world’

Myanmar security forces opened fire on some of the biggest protests against military rule in days on Sunday killing seven people, media reported, three months after a coup plunged the country into crisis. The protests, after a spell of dwindling crowds and what appeared to be more restraint by the security forces, were coordinated with demonstrations in Myanmar communities around the world to mark what organisers called “the global Myanmar spring revolution”.

Macron’s party teams up with conservatives for regional elections in south

French President Emmanuel Macron’s centre-right party has formed an alliance with the conservative Les Republicains (LR) for regional elections in June in the southern Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur region, the prime minister was cited as saying on Sunday. Coming a year after Macron’s La Republique en Marche (LREM) party got trounced in municipal elections, the alliance shows a recognition within the ruling party that it is too weak and unpopular to win some regions on its own.

UK’s Johnson faces more questions over personal spending

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced more allegations on Sunday about his expenditure on the refurbishment of his apartment and on childcare for his young son, which his foreign minister dismissed as baseless gossip. Johnson has repeatedly weathered gaffes, crises over Brexit and disclosures of his adultery, but the revelation that he and his fiancee, Carrie Symonds, spent lavishly to redecorate their residence with a designer feted by royalty has touched a nerve.

(With inputs from agencies.)



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